As I mentioned in a previous post, I am a goal setter more so than a resolution maker. I mean, let's face it... Every January first, we make these lofty promises to ourselves with the best intentions but our plans are fundamentally flawed. First, we lack a quantifiable means by which to measure the success or accomplishment of many of our resolutions, we haven't determined which new habit/behaviour will replace the one we wish to change, and we often lack a plan or sequence of steps. The absence of these things (aside from often taking on WAY too much) makes it a virtual certainty that we will fail.. Ever notice how your resolutions are similar year after year? Quit smoking, lose weight, read more books, get active, watch less TV... These are nice ideas but they have the aforementioned things in common.
In order for you to make lasting change inspired by the fresh start that a new year brings, you MUST lay the groundwork for success. Have you ever heard of SMART? No, I don't mean in the sense of intelligence, but rather the mnemonic for guiding you through your goal setting for the new year (or anytime for that matter!)
Seems obvious and maybe even redundant to do all this work with your goals for the new year but let's talk it out. I'll use an example from my own life. I have a marathon planned for April 7th in Blackpool England. I have been training since the summer but it's been kinda half-assed (since we're being totally honest here). I need to get my ass ready for this thing so I can accomplish my goal of finishing a marathon within the allotted 6 hours and not causing any injuries that proper training can help prevent.
So the goal is to run a marathon in April and in training to run one long run (incrementally longer as the weeks go on) and 2-3 shorter runs throughout the week. Let's break it down.
S-This goal is specific. I want to run a marathon plus train by running 3-4 times per week until then.
M-is the accomplishment of the goal measurable? Yep. I will know I've accomplished the goal when I cross the finish line in Blackpool on April 7th within the 6 hours and without injury.
A-This goal is attainable. I have been training since the summer (I think 20+ weeks is the recommended training time for who already run 15-20Km/week
R-This particular goal is on my bucket list so it is very relevant. I am enjoying the many benefits of adding a regular running routine to my schedule
T-It is very time sensitive. The marathon is on April 7th whether I'm ready or not. I have every intention of being ready.
Now, having done the work on this goal, I can see that it definitely meets all criteria and I can confidently add this to my list of goals for 2013. There are several others including reading one book per month (rather than just "reading more"), continue to run 2-3x/week for 3-5Km each run after the marathon, join my team for another great run in the Klondike Road Relay, use our new home gym 2-3x/week once my new trainer and I work out a routine of 20-45 minutes, go on at least one date per month with my husband and with each of my boys (as per their request) and a bunch of other great things.
Give yourself the gift of success with Kickstart the Year. This is an affiliate link which means every program sold, I receive a commission for but as a participant in the program, I can say with certainty that there is so much value in what you will download! If you are serious about making changes and creating every opportunity for you to enjoy some pretty amazing stuff in the upcoming new year, I encourage you to purchase the program and share your work on your blog.
If you want to share the work you do with either Kickstart the Year or with using the SMART criteria for your New Year's goals, please do so in the comments section below. I will leave you blog-love. I promise.
Much love and blessings.